Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 1-15-2014


This report estimates the economic impact of commercial fishing within all California National Marine Sanctuaries (CA NMS) according to the California Ocean Fish Harvester Economic Model (COFHE). The methodology applies county multipliers to estimates of harvest revenue from CA NMS in order to calculate output, income, value added and employment. This report also describes a profile of the commercial fish industry in the CA NMS. CA NMS includes all existing National Marine Sanctuary sites in California: Channel Islands (CINMS), Monterey Bay (MBNMS), Cordell Bank (CBNMS) and Gulf of the Farallones (GFNMS).

The three-year average for 2010 to 2012 finds that landings of commercial fish catch from CA NMS generated over $69.2 million in harvest revenue, almost $114 million in output, $76.9 million in value added, $69.8 million in total income and 1,841 full- and part-time jobs across 15 counties. Consequently, almost one third of all CA commercial fish catch comes from CA NMS. During the study period harvest revenue demonstrated a consistent decline from almost $75.7 million in 2010 to almost $64.9 million in 2012. In 2012 the top five species/species groups caught in CA NMS were Dungeness crab, Squid, Salmon, Urchin and Groundfish. These top five species/species groups accounted for almost 86% of all CA NMS landings in 2012. In 2012 the top four ports where catch from the CA NMS was landed were Princeton-Half Moon, San Francisco, Moss Landing and Santa Barbara Harbor. Dependency on the sanctuaries for total port landings varied, ranging from a high of over 96% at Princeton Half-Moon to a low of almost 60% at San Francisco. In addition, the largest numbers of vessels in CA NMS were out of the San Francisco, Monterey and Santa Barbara Harbor port complexes.


The Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, serves as the trustee for a system of 14 marine protected areas encompassing more than 170,000 square miles of ocean and Great Lakes waters. The 13 national marine sanctuaries and one marine national monument within the National Marine Sanctuary System represent areas of America’s ocean and Great Lakes environment that are of special national significance. Within their waters, giant humpback whales breed and calve their young, coral colonies flourish, and shipwrecks tell stories of our maritime history. Habitats include beautiful coral reefs, lush kelp forests, whale migrations corridors, spectacular deep-sea canyons, and underwater archaeological sites. These special places also provide homes to thousands of unique or endangered species and are important to America’s cultural heritage. Sites range in size from one square mile to almost 140,000 square miles and serve as natural classrooms, cherished recreational spots, and are home to valuable commercial industries.

Because of considerable differences in settings, resources, and threats, each marine sanctuary has a tailored management plan. Conservation, education, research, monitoring and enforcement programs vary accordingly. The integration of these programs is fundamental to marine protected area management. The Marine Sanctuaries Conservation Series reflects and supports this integration by providing a forum for publication and discussion of the complex issues currently facing the sanctuary system. Topics of published reports vary substantially and may include descriptions of educational programs, discussions on resource management issues, and results of scientific research and monitoring projects. The series facilitates integration of natural sciences, socioeconomic and cultural sciences, education, and policy development to accomplish the diverse needs of NOAA’s resource protection mandate. All publications are available on the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries Web site (`